Basic keyboard to start off with for the short-medium term (below €350)
- Casio CT-S300 – if you aren’t sure whether you/your child will continue with lessons in the future and you/your child just want to try it out AND you/your child is not learning classical music, I recommend Casio CT-S300. It has all features that I look for in a beginner keyboard – it is touch sensitive and you can attach a pedal to it if you need to. It should last your/your child at least the first two years of their music education.
- Roland Go:Piano or Roland Go:Keys – go with this as a default for a basic keyboard if you are on a budget and would like something that would support the lessons for the short to medium term. The piano sounds of Roland keyboards sound great and real.
- Yamaha NP-12 or Yamaha NP-32 – go with this only if you can’t get a Roland Go:Piano or Go:Keys.
Basic digital pianos for the long term (below €500)
If you/your child is looking for a basic digital piano that is for the long-term, here are my recommendations. If you have a higher budget, I would definitely suggesting getting a digital piano that is below €900 instead.
Korg B2 (or buy from Thomann) – Not as good as Roland FP-10 but better than Yamaha P45). Joseph used to have an earlier model of the Korg digital piano and he actually practised exclusively on it for this ATCL and passed with distinction! The speakers on Korg B2 is better than Roland FP-10 however Joseph prefers the touch of the keys on the Roland FP-10 which is the most important feature to consider when choosing a digital piano. To get an even better sound on Roland FP-10, you can play with headphones.
Yamaha P45 – get this only if you can’t get hold of a Roland FP-10 or Korg B2.
Digital pianos for the long term (below €900)
Roland FP-30X. This is one of the digital pianos in Celbridge Piano school.
Casio PX-870 or Korg C1 Air. This is one of the digital pianos that Joseph would get if he’s getting the 5th piano for Celbridge Piano.
Best digital pianos for the long term (above €1,000)
Yamaha Clavinovas – make sure you get one from the latest series. As of 2022, the latest series is 700s. The most basic model is Yamaha CLP 725. I suggest going with at least a Yamaha CLP 735 if you are getting a Clavinova.
Kawai ES8 – this is a slab piano with amazing keys.
Alternative to Amazon.co.uk – Thomann
Joseph and his students has good experience with Thomann. He personally has purchased four digital pianos, numerous keyboards, keyboard stands, percussion instruments, etc from them. The pricing is very competitive, if not the most competitive in Europe, there is free shipping if you purchase above a certain limit, and the return process is efficient if you are not satisfied with the purchase (but do double check the return procedures, don’t take Joseph’s word for it!).